Rwanda will relocate about 600 Congolese refugees living in Rwanda from Nkamira Transit Centre to the new camp whose construction scheduled to be completed by early next year.
This was disclosed by the Minister of Disaster Management and Refugee Affairs (MIDMAR), Mukantabana Seraphine on December 19, 2013.
The new camp will host about 10,000 Congolese refugees who have spent about a year in Nkamira Transit Center in Rubavu District in the Western Province of Rwanda.
Mugombwa Refugee camp will be extended to a 47, 7 hectares land.
Minister Seraphine thanked UNHCR representative in Rwanda Neimah Warsame for her commitment and continued support to the government of Rwanda in handling the emergency of Congolese refugees’ influx that started since April 2012.
Warsame and Gisagara District Mayor Leandre Karekezi, inaugurated construction works for a new refugee camp in Mugombwa Sector in Gisagara District in the Southern Province.
“We are very grateful for the generosity and kindness expressed by Gisagara District mayor for acting swiftly to the establishment of the new camp,” said Mukantabana.
“It’s an obligation for us to ensure that the refugees are in safe places and in accordance with international refugees convention which stipulates that refugees should not be accommodated near the border of the country they fled from,” she said.
Relocation of refugees from Nkamira Transit Centre is expected to start next month. At the beginning, 600 families with school-going children will be relocated in time to start school in the first term,” Mukantabana said.
Rwanda has since 2012 received Congolese nationals who were fleeing clashes between government and M23 rebels.
Kigeme Camp, which currently hosts more than 18,000 refugees, was overwhelmed by the influx. The situation prompted government to start looking for alternative solutions, leading to the setting up of a large camp in Nyamagabe District.
Mugombwa Refugee Camp becomes the second facility for Congolese refugees in Southern Province after Kigeme Refugee Camp, which was set up in 2012.
It brings the number of refugee camps to five, after Kigeme, Nyabiheke, Kiziba and Gihembe.
Currently Rwanda hosts more than 73,000 Congolese refugees.